Why is an mind map or outline helpful when researching and writing a paper?
Selecting a good topic and sub topics can be one of the most challenging parts of a paper. Many tools can help. Try a couple of these tools until you find the one that works best for you.
This technique can help you determine what you already know on your topic, what sub-topics you might want to explore more and helps develop keywords you can use in searching (e.g. for books or articles).
- Bubbl.us: Brainstorm and Mind-map online
No login needed, just start writing down your ideas and thoughts.
Outlines can help you to organize the logical order of your paper. After you have found and read some of your sources like books or articles, the outline can help you to group thoughts and show the relationship between ideas.
- Outline Creator
This site gives a step-by-step, fill in the blank for an actual outline you can follow. This tools will help you organize your thoughts and evidence.
- Types of Outlines from Purdue Writing Lab
This site includes organization and samples of outlines.